Arsenal v Leeds Utd Match Thread - Jamie Shackleton replaces the injured Kalvin Phillips
11 Feb 2021 10:14 am, by Ellandback1
Sunday 14th February 16.30pm | Emirates Stadium
Having won three out of their last 4 league matches, a confident Leeds squad will be travelling down to the Emirates Stadium hoping they can break heir London voodoo. The Whites have not won in London since dispatching QPR at Loftus Road in December 2017. Due to their recent revival, Bielsa's lads have climbed a point clear of the Gunners in 10th place, on 32 points. Arsenal have lost their last two league games and will be desperate to avoid a third defeat on the bounce. Their recent form has left them in 11th position in the table, one point behind 10th placed Leeds ahead of this weekend's contest. Last time the two sides met at Elland Road back in November it was a nil nil draw despite Arsenal going down to ten men. Nicolas Pépé was sent off having clashed heads with Ezgjan Alioski.
Arsenal will be without both Kieran Tierney and Thomas Partey for this weekend's Premier League clash with Leeds United at the Emirates Stadium. Tierney has missed his side's last four league matches with a calf strain, and a statement on the London club's official website revealed that the Scotland international would again be absent against the Whites. Partey, meanwhile, was forced off against Aston Villa last weekend with a hamstring problem, and the summer arrival from Atletico Madrid will not be available to take on Marcelo Bielsa's side. David Luiz and Bernd Leno both return from suspensions and Gianni Alioski’s best friend Nicolas Pépé is also available. Leeds United cult hero Emile Smith Rowe has been Arsenal’s break out star since Christmas in an otherwise lacklustre Gunners side.
Leeds and England ace Kalvin Philips will miss the trip to North London after the 24 year old picked up a calf strain during their 2-0 win against Crystal Palace. He will be replaced in the Leeds starting line-up by Jamie Shackleton. Bielsa has indicated that Struijk will play defensive midfield, Luke Ayling will move to the centre of defence whilst Shackelton will play right back. Diego Llorente and Rodrigo remain unavaialbe and we still wait a date for the return of Berardi who started first team training again this week. Pablo Hernandez returns to the bench alongside youngsters Joe Gelhardt, Jack Jenkins and Niall Huggins.
The Whites go into the game having tasted victory in their last two away matches, a 2-1 success against Newcastle United which was followed up by an impressive 3-1 win against high-flying Leicester. Those victories mean that Bielsa’s side have won six out of their 11 matches on the road during their first season back in the Premier League. Arsenal have struggled on home turf this season. From their 11 matches, they have only recorded four wins, with three draws and four losses in their other seven fixtures. Mikel Arteta’s side have overcome their troubles from the start of the season. Prior to back-to-back losses in their last two matches, the Gunners had been on a seven match unbeaten run, winning five.
Leeds Starting XI
Meslier, Ayling, Cooper, Struijk, Alioski, Harrison, Shackleton, Klich, Dallas, Raphinha, Bamford
Subs: Casilla, Roberts, Costa, Hernandez, Davis, Gelhardt, Jenkins, Huggins